Rugby Australia chairman Hamish McLennan says they were ‘perplexed’ by the decision for the Springboks to be withdrawn from the Rugby Championship.
On Friday, it was confirmed that the Springboks would not be defending their Rugby Championship crown, with the tournament reverting to what is now effectively a Tri-Nations between Australia, New Zealand and Argentina.
‘We’ll find a way through it,’ McLennan told reporters at the launch of Australia’s indigenous jersey. ‘We were surprised because South Africa did agree to the tournament and the scheduling, so we were disappointed that they pulled out.
‘It will cost us quite a lot of money but we’ll find a way through it … we’ve proven so far that we’re a pretty resilient organisation.’
McLennan added that there would be no claim for compensation against the Springboks.
‘I think it was obvious that [the competition] was good for everyone. If you look at South Africa, their top players won’t have played Test rugby for 20 months when the [British & Irish] Lions come through next year.
‘We would have given them ample time to prepare for the Tests, we’ve already got the Argentinians out here at the moment and they are quite satisfied with how their preparations are going.
‘So, we were a little perplexed but we’ll have to move on …’
Tri-Nations match schedule 2020
31 October: Australia vs New Zealand (ANZ Stadium, Sydney)
7 November: Australia vs New Zealand (Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane)
14 November: New Zealand vs Argentina (Bankwest Stadium, Sydney)
21 November: Argentina vs Australia (McDonald Jones Stadium, Newcastle)
28 November: Argentina vs New Zealand (McDonald Jones Stadium, Newcastle)
5 December: Australia vs Argentina (Bankwest Stadium, Sydney)